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Gastronomic tourism and smart solutions used for its development: the case of a region of Latvia

Andra Zvirbule (Faculty of Economics and Social Development, Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies, Jelgava, Latvia)
Anita Auzina (Faculty of Economics and Social Development, Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies, Jelgava, Latvia)
Gunta Grinberga-Zalite (Faculty of Economics and Social Development, Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies, Jelgava, Latvia)

Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes

ISSN: 1755-4217

Article publication date: 3 July 2023

Issue publication date: 12 October 2023

203

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the study is to examine opportunities for gastronomic tourism development and smart solutions in the regions of Latvia.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology is based on a qualitative approach applied to examine the theoretical and legal frameworks for gastronomic tourism, as well as on a case study based on mapping and a typology of gastronomic tourism.

Findings

An analysis of priorities for the Kurzeme planning region (including Talsi municipality) in tourism development revealed that digitalization, the introduction of smart solutions important for travellers and the integration of the digital environment and innovative solutions into tourism services are specified in policy documents. An examination of a mapping of tourist services supplied in the Talsi municipality and the role of gastronomic tourism therein showed that such a mapping can serve as a basis for developing targeted smart and digital tourism products for Talsi municipality, which involves both the target audience and the typology of food tourist behaviour.

Research limitations/implications

The examination of smart solutions for the regions of Latvia represented an in-depth case study of one municipality – Talsi. Talsi municipality was selected as a typical gastronomic destination, which offers a wide range of gastronomic tourism opportunities, and this kind of tourism is also referred to in the tourism development strategy of the municipality (region).

Originality/value

This study's contribution is determined by the constantly changing dynamic environment that fosters the differentiation of supply of tourism products, as well as the integration of smart solutions into tourism products. Gastronomic tourism in Latvia and the Baltic states plays a steady role in contributing to the recognition of the cultural environment and regional traditions; therefore, the supply of smart solutions is essential and significant from the regional perspective. The originality of the research is also determined by an examination of smart solutions for gastronomic tourism in the tourism products supplied in the region.

Keywords

Citation

Zvirbule, A., Auzina, A. and Grinberga-Zalite, G. (2023), "Gastronomic tourism and smart solutions used for its development: the case of a region of Latvia", Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes, Vol. 15 No. 5, pp. 570-580. https://doi.org/10.1108/WHATT-06-2023-0076

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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